4 ways to do traditions your own way

by Danielle Pasternak on 02-03-2012 in Q & A

4 ways to do traditions your own way

For a wedding, I think having a nice blend of traditions and trends are a must. But walking the line of what tradition to keep and what tradition to ditch is a difficult stroll – especially when 17 different family members tell you 23 different things on how you should or shouldn’t do this or that.

I decided to break down some traditional elements and look for ways to put a fresh spin on it, without losing the point of the tradition.

the cake. History tells us that the cake cutting and serving ceremony started as a gift. It was the first gift the bride and groom gave to each other, and they then shared that gift with the community (a.k.a. their guests). Ok, that’s a nice tradition. But do you need a 5-layer cake if you’re not a cake person? Nope. Try using desserts like cupcakes, pies, cake pops, doughnuts – anything that suits your style and taste (pun intended). You can still feed it to each other (I greatly despise the cake-smashing tradition) in front of your guests and share it with them via a beautiful dessert display or delivered on a plate to their seat.

something old, new, borrowed, blue.
 This is one of those things that can either be way fun or a headache. If Mom is nagging you about wearing Great-Grandma’s pearl necklace with your frock, but you’re rolling your eyes thinking pearls are just not right for you – then it’s just not right for you. But, you can make Mom (and Great-Grandma) happy by lightly stitching the necklace into the bustle of your dress, maybe. Or try giving it to your trusted florist to be delicately wrapped around your bouquet. You can actually do a lot of fun things under your dress (tee-hee) like sew your wedding into your dress – in blue thread, of course! Be creative and have fun with it. But don’t think you have to show off all the elements.

favors and centerpieces. I’m excited to see the era of giving meaningless favors quietly leaving. When thinking about your favors (a.k.a. your “thank you for witnessing the coolest day of our lives so far”) make sure to take the guests into account. Will they really use a picture frame with YOUR names and wedding date carved into them? Likely not. Could that money be better spent on something else? You bet. What if you gave each of your guests something that you and your spouse made/did together? Or even make a donation in the guests’ name to charity that means something to you and/or your families? How about a CD of your all-time favorite songs?As for the centerpieces, donate them to hospitals and senior citizen homes. They will brighten their day more than you could possibly imagine.

the walk down the aisle.
 Back in the day, families were a bit more… traditional. Modern families have all different types of dynamics. Most fathers that are close with their daughters secretly think of the day when they will walk them down the aisle in the church they grew up in. But that’s not always the case. Maybe your father has passed away or isn’t in the picture. Maybe you feel like you are slighting your mother by not including her in that moment. Maybe there is someone else that you closer to that you’d like to include. Maybe you’d prefer to walk independently down the aisle. The key to this decision is: do what’s right for you. If you follow that rule, then nothing else could possibly matter. I’ve seen brides walk alone, with their fathers, step-fathers, mothers, both parents, older brothers, sisters, best friends. And it was all special because it meant something to them.

So, how are you incorporating traditions into your day? And how are you putting your own spin on it?

Photo credit: Pinterest and the ever-amazing Douglas Benedict Photography

Submitted by Danielle Pasternak

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